The Iguana Den





Cage Setup

Setting up an iguana cage takes a little thought. There are several things to consider when you design the interior of your cage, and the lighting setup.

The first thing you need are climbing and basking areas. Your ig needs plenty of things to climb on to provide exercise. Exercise is essential to good health. Branches are perhaps the most commonly used material for climbing, but other people have had success with ramps made of wood or the plastic coated closet shelving. Whatever you use, make sure it provides a secure grip for your iguana to prevent falls. Some cage carpeting or sisal rope can be wrapped around slick surfaces to provide a better grip.

Your ig needs a basking area so they can get close enough to their heat and UVB lights. Again, branches, closet shelving, or wood can be used to provide a basking area. If should be large enough for your iguana to stretch out on comfortably, since they spend a large portion of their day basking on it.

You should also provide a hide area for your ig to retreat to when they feel stressed. A box or hut can work for smaller iguanas, and even some artfully arranged fake plants and vines can be used to provide a 'private' area for your iguana.

The placement of lights is also an important factor. Your ig needs to be close enough to the heat lights to warm up enough to digest food, but they lamps need to be far enough away or protected in some way to prevent burns. Some wire hardware mesh can be used to keep iguanas from getting too close to the lights.

UVB placement is perhaps the most important consideration. UVB cannot pass through glass or plastic, so your iguana needs an unobstructed light fixture. UVB also dissipates with distance. For the fluorescent style UVB tubes like the ZooMed ReptiSun or IguanaLight, they should be no more than 6-8 inches away from the where your ig will be on the basking area. At distances farther than that, the amount of UVB drops dramatically and your iguana may not get enough. The mercury vapor lights such as the PowerSun are much stronger, and the UVB from them penetrates farther than the tubes. These should be about 12 inches away, especially since they throw off a lot of heat as well as UVB.

The following picture shows a sample cage setup for a large iguana:

Iguana Cage Setup



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